Monday, August 15, 2016

[insert group name] for Indy

The Summer of Independence seems to be doing just fine without any assistance from party politics. In every village and town, city and shire of Scotland, the grassroots organisations that rose up in 2014 are getting their groups back together with the aim of further increasing support for Scottish Independence. Far from having voter fatigue from what seems like never-ending elections in Scotland since the first independence referendum, there is a definite spring in their step.

This time they are wiser, bolder, more experienced, better networked and much more media savvy. They are a force to be reckoned with. They are not bound by convention, by rules and regulations. They are independent.

The task ahead of the membership of these groups is fairly straightforward. Each yes voter from 2014 has to convince just one no voter to change their mind. They will not waste their energies on those who are solidly no. They will focus on those whose no vote was based on fear and on lies. The real aim is to bring voters over to yes by reaching out to those whose mind can be changed.

Brexit has given them an unexpected boost. They have already moved to capitalise on the fact that there are now those no voters who take the view, that the UK they voted to stay part of, is no longer planning to be in the EU. The welcome to the 'yes' side for these switchers has been warm and encouraging. Everybody knows someone who has changed their mind on Scottish independence because of Brexit. This has become the top 'material change' that has re-ignited the desire for Indyref 2.

The reason why there are so many different types of yes groups forming up is because this is not, and never was, about party politics. No-one voted yes for a political party. They voted yes for Scottish independence, for their nation to be free to decide what is best for Scotland.

Yes groups are reforming because there is work to do to change hearts and minds to yes and political parties don't have the reach to achieve that.

When Nicola Sturgeon is asked "when will you call Indyref2"? she always replies "That is a decision for the People of Scotland". 

That's you that is.

  • The job of the grassroots is to connect and reconnect with Scots of independent mind.
  • The job of the grassroots is to reach those whose only sources of information are the unionist broadcasters and unionist newspapers.
  • The job of the grassroots is to bust unionist myths and scare tactics in our own communities.
  • The job of the grassroots is to include no voters in their everyday discussions and to widen the sphere of 'yes' influence.
  • The job of the grassroots is to recognise that people voted no for lots of different reasons and we need to find out what those reasons were (or are) before we can address them as individuals.
  • The job of the grassroots is to paint a picture of an independent Scotland that the majority of Scots can buy into.

Branch meetings of political parties don't do that - they're not designed to do that. Branch meetings of yes groups are free to.

When you go along to a yes group meeting, you'll hear people talk of "the first independence referendum" like it was just their first attempt at independence. They are not going to give up after their first try. They are deliciously determined to see Scotland flourish as an independent nation. They are not just talking shops or echo chambers, they are hubs where you can gain the confidence to speak to no voters with the knowledge you need to get them to yes.

We don't get to be independent without switching no voters. We do that by starting the conversation "are you YES yet?" 

                              Print by Stewart Bremner      

Some stuff to be getting on with:

Start by wearing your yes badge every day.
Find your local yes group on Facebook and Twitter and make contact with them.
Be ready.
Get connected to the National Yes Registry.

Click here

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